For our final installment, we spent some time with Ria’s Director of Business Intelligence, Korey McGee. Among other things, we learned encounters with sharks don’t always end badly.
Let’s start with the basics. Where are you from?
I was born in Chicago, Illinois and raised in Colorado.
And what’s something most people don’t know about you?
I collect penguins– stuffed penguins, penguin figurines, really anything penguin-related. I think I’ve always liked them because they’re always formally dressed… and they’re birds that can’t fly. It doesn’t make any sense. They’re anomalies in the animal kingdom.
Have you had a chance to interact with one in person?
No, not real ones. I wish I could have one as a pet though. One of my goals is to see penguins in their natural habitat.
That would be such an amazing experience. Speaking of traveling to see penguins, do you have a favorite place to travel?
I love the Caribbean side of Mexico. The water is warmer, it’s cleaner. When I travel, I usually go to Cancun. But I really love Cozumel.
Is there anything specific that’s drawn you to Cozumel?
I’m a certified scuba diver, so Cozumel is one of my favorite—and in my opinion, the best—places for diving.
For those of us who have never had the opportunity to give diving a try, what’s it like?
Diving is incredibly freeing. You almost have zero gravity. You’re floating around and get to see some really beautiful, unique fish. On my first diving trip, I was on the surface of the water, adjusting my equipment and lagging behind the rest of the group. I look up and see this hammerhead shark. It was so cool. But then I realized, “Oh no. I’m alone…with a shark. I better get down with the rest of the group!”
That sounds like a pretty memorable introduction to diving. Do you remember what you wanted to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be a firefighter. I have no idea why because, as an adult now, I have absolutely zero interest in that. The idea of being around smoke and fires on a regular basis doesn’t sound too appealing.
What do you like most about your job?
I really like analysis, digging into numbers and finding interesting ways of looking at what it is that we’re doing as a business, or how we’re reaching certain milestones. I mean, when you think about it, people trust us to move billions of dollars each month around the globe. It’s pretty amazing to see where we are today.
Most people probably don’t know this, but you’re one of the original members of the Ria Digital division, right?
Yeah, I’ve been a part of the digital division of Ria from the beginning, since there were only three people in the office. I was interviewed in a coffee shop because there wasn’t even an office.
What’s a fond memory you have from Ria Digital in the early days?
The first office we were in had incredibly tight quarters. If I even backed up my chair slightly, I would run into Julie, the person sitting directly behind me. We would constantly run into each other but at the same time, being so close had its advantages.
Thankfully, our office is a little bit bigger now. As someone who has been with the company for some time, what do you feel Ria stands for?
I think as a brand, Ria stands for integrity. There’s a lot of pride in helping people get money to their loved ones who truly need or rely on it to provide essentials in life. It makes what we do important and impactful.